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Motorcycle Repair/1999 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 problem


Turned key on my 1999 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 today and the starter relay behind the radiator tank on the right made a click for 1 second before all power was lost (all lights out). Checked battery first, fine. Checked all fuses fine. Tried starting bike and starter relay clicked for 1 second and again all power was lost. I waited 1 minute and it started with no problem.

While accelerating, it occasionally backfires and seems to loose power for a second then comes back. Idles fine.  Any ideas

Hi Jay,

There are quite a few circuits that could cause problems but
most likely either a faulty ignition switch or a junction box
internal relay is bad.

Also check for loose battery ground to the frame or poor connections on the
battery and starter solenoid relay.

The junction box has a few internal relays but the unit is not
serviceable, it must be replaced. Some of it might be possible
to bypass with the help of a wiring diagram and some
electrical skill.

Here is the wiring for the starter circuits and junction box,
it might help you find the break in the power if you
have a multimeter or test light.

It can be tough to find intermittant faults but if you
notice anything else you can let me know.


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Wayne S.


Licensed Motorcycle Mechanic, Knowledge of motorcycles from 1960 up, Japanese, British and most other brand motorcycle repairs.


Worked for Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki British: Triumph, Norton, BSA Other: Most Scooters and Mo-Peds

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